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A perennial favorite for the forty-five years since it first came out in theatres, Brian DePalma’s adaptation of the Stephen King novel Carrie is one of those films that confronted its problematic impulses early on and has reigned in the hearts of weirdos, outcasts, the downtrodden, and everyone who’s been stuck on the business end of established power structures. But what, specifically, makes Carrie speak to the LGBTQIA community?
It’s not just PJ Soles inventing the Lisbeth Salander look, or Edie McClurg’s glasses. And it can’t just be the idea of telekinetic revenge, though society would be in a much better place if the patriarchy, bullies, and religious fundamentalists conducted themselves knowing that there was a potential queer TK reckoning around every corner.
Carrie is a symphony of the target, both in the nefarious endeavors of the villainous and for the clumsy, noble intentions of assorted do-gooders (oh, if only would-be allies could learn the lessons of this film as well). Sissy Spacek is gawky and charming, and there is literally no reason why the kids at Bates High School should hate her, except in mistransferred frustration at her religious tendencies and ineptitude at P.E.
There is a certain degree of ridiculousness present in the film, and DePalma understands camp better than the vast majority of straight people. But here’s the magical thing about Carrie—yes, there are parts of it that are very, very funny. But you don’t get to laugh at it unless you understand the pain at its foundation. The campy aspects of Carrie bite at the viewer from the inside. The split diopter, one of DePalma’s extensive bag of stylistic tricks, is the perfect visual representation of high school queerness. Everyone is there, no one is omitted, and yet there is an unspannable gulf between us that can only be defined by the absence of bridgeable space.
After the volleyball humiliation of the opening credits, the tracking shot through the girls’ locker room is a burlesque of sorts—it is the expected parade of nubile bodies, of blossoming youth fulfilling the expectations of the establishment—whether ‘70s audiences or the institution of high school. And then we are introduced to Spacek, isolated, in the shower, momentarily taking a degree of sensual pleasure in water and cleanliness. It’s the only time in the film that we get to see Carrie take physical pleasure in anything, and as the universe is prone to doing whenever Carrie White experiences any sort of pleasure, it intervenes with her first period.
The girls pelting Carrie with sanitary products are the exact equivalent of the people who aim to exclude the very existence of queer people from educational texts (this means you, Tennessee legislature). They delight in weaponizing the ignorance that they have created, propping themselves up in the process. We exist, but we are only allowed to live at the whims of our parents and our peers. The thing that recurs in the mind is the late, great Jessica Walter on the short-lived 90210 reboot, trying to get the young students she’s directing in a production of Spring Awakening to understand, eventually declaiming “this is about your mother. She’s been lying to you about sex, and it pisses you off.”
Because Margaret White has been lying to her daughter about sex—using physical violence and a betrayal of the actual tenets of Christ. Piper Laurie, in this role, is an unholy fusion of an Avon Lady and a Mack truck, a battering ram of evangelical certainty that is sowing the seeds of destruction for everything around her.
The sad center of the myth of Carrie White, though, is that Margaret was right about humanity. The universe was aiming to hoist Carrie on her own pride, and they were all going to laugh at her. She could have stayed home instead, and nobody would have died. Despite some recent victories for the community, you only have to look at our legislators to see that that malignant, psychotic fundamentalism (that misses the point of actual Christian principles) drives the nation. That delusional religion is tolerated, and its transgressions and crimes are forgiven. What kind of insanity makes a parent hate their children?
And then, to complete this triangle of personae, there’s Miss Collins, as played by national treasure/gay icon/Broadway legend Betty Buckley—the kind of complicated figure that ‘70s cinema excelled in depicting. As a gym teacher, she is a sadist, but she finds a way to channel that sadism into moral righteousness in a way that wins the audience over. She confesses to the principal (over a cigarette in the office) that she understood the other girls’ frustration and disgust, but she fought against it for the cause of empathy and kindness.
Miss Collins will later help with an impromptu makeover and slap the smug off queen bee Chris Hargenson’s face (which would absolutely get her fired today, regardless of how evil Nancy Allen’s Chris was being). But she ultimately dies in the conflagration on prom night because she’s a gym teacher, and no one can completely accept that any gym teacher isn’t a tool of the established power structure.
What's the point of Carrie?
The moment that just practically shines a giant neon sign on the queer experience (putting aside the musical, which is magical) is when Carrie arrives at the prom and everyone is bowled over. “Oh wow,” the crowd responds, “you’re pretty and worthy of the dignity we denied you because we were lazy and didn’t feel like going against the powerful people who decided we should hate you.” Because as queer people, we get tone policed—thought down of for being quiet, then mocked for speaking. The system is designed to be impossible to surmount.
The lesson of Carrie is not that they’ll get theirs, but that you have to suppress the instinct that tells you to trust others. You have to look out for yourself. And the people you should be able to depend on are just as flawed and messed up as you may be.This film still plays like gangbusters in a theatre. For some it’s a tragedy, for others pitch black comedy. But everyone feels it. Everyone responds. And like Heathers, everyone the film was telling about themselves, who were part of the crowd, now they see themselves on the opposite side of the situation. And doesn’t that just say it all?
For those with a thirst to celebrate, Red Bull Unlocked is the key. In city after city, the most exciting bars, clubs, mixologists, performing artists, and more take over a local landmark building to showcase their signature ambiance while also collaborating for a must-see mashup. And now it's Music City’s turn to seize the spotlight, as the event brings 10 bars together in East Nashville’s Five Points neighborhood.
Fueled by the best of Nashville’s thriving music scene, Red Bull Unlocked has curated an eclectic night of show-stopping entertainment performances including a pop-up Whiskey Jam show, DJ sets, musicians, and more. The full lineup is here:
- Whiskey Jam (feat. Dozzi, Willie Shaw, and Johnny Hayes)
- A.B. Eastwood
- Daisha / Rap Girl
- Boom Bap (DJ Collective feat. DJ-Rate, Case Bloom)
- Whiskey Disco (DJ Collective feat. Coach, Jim O'Shea)
- Old Crow Medicine Show’s Jerry Pentercost (DJ Set)
- DJ Stretch
- DJ Griffin Green
- The Play Mates (Drag Show feat. Sasha, Vanity, Deception, Aura Mayari, Corlis Todd, and Carmin Triple C)
Counting down to the epic celebration, Daisha shares, “I never thought I’d have the opportunity to perform in so many of Nashville’s top spots all in the same night. Fans can expect a lot of bops and high energy. I want people to dance and have a good time.”
Ward Guenther, Whiskey Jam Founder, adds, “Red Bull has been enjoyed at Whiskey Jam since the very first night, so it's only fitting Whiskey Jam is enjoyed at Nashville's first Red Bull Unlocked. Looking forward to this!”
Red Bull Unlocked Istanbul
Photo courtesy of Red Bull
Local favorites including Pearl Diver, Tin Roof, Lipstick Lounge, White Limozeen, and more will join forces for one epic night. Full list of bars and partners below:
- The Dive Motel
- Lipstick Lounge
- Pearl Diver
- Play Dance Bar
- Rosemary & Beauty Queen
- The Stage
- Tin Roof
- Whiskey Jam
- White Limozeen
- Woolworth Theatre – Opening Fall 2022!
- Eleven Eleven - Opening 2023!
Date: August 21, 2022
Time: 6 PM – 11PM CT
Location: 1102 Forrest Ave, Nashville, TN 37206
Entrance: Ticked event
Rumble Boxing, the boxing-inspired group fitness studio, opened its doors for the first time in Nashville on June 20 at 609 Overton St, Nashville, TN. The hottest workout on the block is hosting its official grand opening from August 4th-7th with daily classes, membership specials, and prizes from local vendors. The new Rumble Boxing studio is currently offering a buy one class, get one free promotion for the Nashville community.
Rumble Boxing delivers 45-minute, 10-round, strength and conditioning group workouts, crafted around teardrop-style aqua boxing bags and high-intensity strength training circuits. This brings all fitness levels together to experience what Rumble is known for: combining the sweet science of boxing with high energy and positive vibes.
Rumble Boxing Fitness Studio
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
This boutique fitness brand offers serious benefits like increased stamina and strength, with cardio that’s actually fun. The seasoned trainers at the new studio are thrilled to serve their local community while offering this fun, new modern approach to boxing and welcome members of all fitness levels to the Rumble family.
The new Rumble Boxing studio is owned and operated by Blake Baskin and Antonio Compton. With their background in the fitness industry, this dynamic duo is excited to bring their passion for boxing and group fitness to Nashville. As business and life partners, Blake and Antonio aim to create a strong community within their new Rumble Boxing studio and share their message of non-apologetic inclusivity.
Black and Gay-Owned Business
Rumble Boxing Store with Dolly Parton Mural
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
“We own who we are, and this brand aligns with that perfectly,” said Antonio. “This is what we want to create and bring to this community: a fitness class that is designed for anyone and a place for people to be who they are. As a Black and gay-owned business, we want to help lower the division we see in the world right now. Our goal is to bring people together through Rumble, set everything aside, and have fun.”
To echo their message of acceptance and inclusion, Blake and Antonio commissioned a local Nashville artist to paint an 11 X 6-ft. mural of Nashville icon and philanthropist, Dolly Parton. The massive portrait features the country star in Rumble Boxing gear in the lobby of the studio.
The excitement and buzz around Rumble allowed Blake and Antonio to recruit top-tier trainers to head up the new studio, including Head Trainer Oronde Jones, a well-known celebrity trainer in the Nashville market.
Rumble Boxing Fitness Studio
Photo courtesy of Rumble Boxing Gulch Nashville
“Compared to other fitness classes, Rumble is a class you can truly get lost in for 45 minutes. With the dark room, you don’t have to worry if anyone is paying attention to you. The music is awesome and inspiring, and the beat drops right when you need it the most. Also, with boxing being a sport you can never truly master, you’re always improving and crafting your skill. On the floor, you’re consistently doing something new, which prevents you from ever hitting a plateau.” Said Oronde Jones about his favorite part of Rumble.
Rumble has massive brand loyalty and widespread appeal, partly thanks to attracting top names like Justin Bieber, Selena Gomez, Kendall Jenner, Hailey Baldwin, Jason Derulo, David Beckham, and Kevin Hart to its studios.
About Rumble Boxing
Founded in New York City in 2017, Rumble is a group fitness concept delivering a mix (or combination) of boxing-inspired circuits and the transformative power of resistance training. Pro and amateur fighters glove up together, no matter their fitness level or skill, to reveal their inner fighter. The experience is a 45-minute, 10-round, full-body cardio and strength workout crafted around specially designed water-filled, teardrop-style boxing bags. Rumble was founded by Noah Neiman (former Barry’s Bootcamp Master Trainer, and cast member of Bravo’s Work Out New York), Eugene Remm (Co-Founder of Catch Hospitality Group (Catch Restaurants, CATCH STEAK, Lexington Brass), Andy Stenzler (Co-Founder Cosí, Kidville), and Anthony DiMarco (13-time IRONMAN, former Managing Director, Google).
Who would have thought that we would have to get through a pandemic in order to appreciate the small things we have, such as the ability to simply pack our bags and hit the road?
For two years, there’s been nothing left for us travel junkies to do but sit at home and try to find new destinations that we will conquer once we defeat what appears to be the biggest villain of the 21st century. But once that happens, hold your bags tight because we will be up for some of the most interesting travel experiences. Take a look at some ideas for your post-COVID traveling plans:
A Gay Cruise
One of the best options to have in mind when all of this passes is a good, nice and long (pun intended) gay cruise. Or cruise in general, for that matter. Bear in mind, social distancing will still be a thing in the post-COVID world. But COVID-19 likely doesn’t mean that cruises will cease to exist. On the contrary, though cruise ships will probably keep the number of passengers smaller than before, it is believed that they will become an even bigger hit in the following period, especially because they are all going to go a lot more environmentally-friendly. On the bright side, is there any better way of celebrating the end of the pandemic than by cruising around some magnificent seas, stopping by at great cities and having romantic dinner nights at nice restaurants?
A getaway in nature
On the other hand, there is always the option of stepping away from the hustle and bustle of large cities, and spending some time in a place that’s not only healthy, but also beautiful. Some of the destinations that plenty of people will look for are the ones that can cater for both peace of mind and amazing things to see or do. One such destination is New Zealand, one of the greenest countries on Earth right now. Not only will you be visiting the magnificent country that gave us the beautiful Shire from Lord of the Rings; this is also a destination that’s excellent for everyone who prefers relaxing to partying. If you’re up for some partying, you will be able to hit Auckland, while if you’re for something calmer, there’s plenty of amazing places that you can see and visit.
Dancing Around at Pride
Pride parades are also events that you want to have in mind for the post-COVID world. Such events have always been quite important, but it seems that they are now more important than ever. The virus has canceled more than 75 Pride parades all around the world, which is one of the reasons why we must support the ones that will see the light of day once the pandemic stops. Truth be told, the upcoming Prides will perhaps be the best Prides ever organized. Give the gays a couple of weeks of quarantine, then let them outside and see what kind of party they are able to throw!
A road trip
If you’re, as well, waiting for the day to wake up and say “long gone are the days when we were not allowed to go wherever we wanted?”, and if staying at one place gave you a lot to think about, then your first post-COVID travel experience should definitely be a nice road trip. You can practically choose which country you want to tour, and you can either take your own car (you have probably missed it so much), or rent one at your destination. Australia is an amazing country for this, though, as it offers the possibility of seeing the Great Ocean Road, which is an amazing thing to see and experience. On the other hand, if you do not want or cannot leave your country, you can also choose to go on a domestic road trip – there are amazing things to see in your vicinity as well.
Holiday for a single guy
If you’re single, or you’re traveling someplace with another single friend, then you should definitely organize a nice vacation for yourself or for you and your single friend, and hit one of the best European cities. Europe has been greatly affected by the virus, which means that now it’s time to pay it back and get it back on its feet by traveling there and seeing all the amazing things it offers. Any city you choose in Europe – you will not make a mistake. Apart from being able to see great landmarks, you will also have the chance to have a drink at great gay clubs and pubs, and join unforgettable gay parties. And if the gay scenery is not your forte, worry not, as Europe indeed has to offer so many different and magnificent things.